JBL Studio 550P 10-Inch Subwoofer Quick Review

lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Seriously, I have no life.
i have been considering getting one of these subs for a small room to use with my ascends sierra 1's and carnegie csb-1's.i wanted to know if the outrigger feet on the sub are removable and if so what width and height the sub is without them.thanks
They look like the same feet on my 590s & 580s....those are removable so imagine same for sub...check the manual.
 
R

rdkusher

Audioholic Intern
They look like the same feet on my 590s & 580s....those are removable so imagine same for sub...check the manual.
thanks for the reply.i checked out the manual and it does not mention the feet being removable.it just gives instructions on removing the rubber pads from the feet and replacing them with spikes.it also doesn't state whether the 17 1/2 inch width is the width of the cabinet or the cabinet with the feet installed.i am curious,on your 590's and 580's are you able to use the spikes in the holes where the feet attach?thanks
 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Seriously, I have no life.
thanks for the reply.i checked out the manual and it does not mention the feet being removable.it just gives instructions on removing the rubber pads from the feet and replacing them with spikes.it also doesn't state whether the 17 1/2 inch width is the width of the cabinet or the cabinet with the feet installed.i am curious,on your 590's and 580's are you able to use the spikes in the holes where the feet attach?thanks
Don't know, have no need for spikes, would have to go look in the accessories kit to see if I even have spikes....The 590s IIRC only had one screw holding the footer on and the 580s I just got I notice have two but the screws are without inserts in the 590 for sure and assume same for 580 so not a lot of interest in using the screws other than for the feet myself. Actually on one of the 590s due to damage in transport due to poor packing I had to supplement the screw hole with a bit of wood glue before I was happy. Maybe @panteragstk can advise if the feet are like the others in the series or not....
 
S

sterling shoote

Audioholic General
50Hz? What sub do you have? That seems pretty poor for any sub other than a $30 PC 2.1 system. If you listen at very low levels without Dynamic EQ engaged, that might be part of the reason, but honestly, something seems wrong.

As far as theater, you're talking to the wrong guy. I am 95/5 HT/music and if you are talking HT content and not just TV (sit-com, news, etc with no LFE) I am probably more like 99/1!
For music, I am happy with dual 8" sealed subs (Velodyne VMS-8/Photon 8) once room gain and Audyssey are in play, but you can see that +/-3dB puts F3 around 30Hz. By your description, I would not guess you have this much bass?:


Switching to a larger, more capable sub gets me a better HT experience. Part of it may be that these are topping out on explosions, etc. My subjective perception is that it is also deeper bass, but I have never attempted to listen for certain pitches. Certainly, there is quite an obvious visceral difference when playing something like the intro to "Live, Die, Repeat" (which is an "unsettling" experience). Understand that my most capable sub for HT is a pair of Rythmik E15HP's which I love, but many here would scoff at them as being "lightweight". I have yet to hear a ported sub that sounds as good, but I need to revisit a comparison against TheWarrior's PC12-plus's now that he has mini-DSP'ed them.
Thanks for your perspective. My sub is a JBL-380. Last night I turned up the gain on my amp powering the sub and was able to hear down to 24hz when the volume of my pre/pro was set to a high volume position. Next, I played some dance music at that volume, like Kayne West's Love Lockdown, and it seemed to me the bass was very exaggerated. Setting the sub's amp back to mid gain seemed to put the sub back into its proper role. That's to say, the subs presence was appreciated. Now, I have never sensed the sub being inadequate for movies; although, a few years ago, while watching a movie, I noticed a lot of distortion coming from the sub. Upon close inspection, I discovered the foam speaker surround had disintegrated. I replaced the foam and all seems well now. BTW, I think my 15 inch driver is identified as a 2245H. It's powered by a Sony TA-N80ES power amp operating in mono at 560 watts, which seems to be the sort of power this driver needs. I had earlier powered the sub with a 300 watt amp but the sub clipped quite a bit.
 
William Lemmerhirt

William Lemmerhirt

Audioholic Spartan
What theatre chain would I need to visit to hear such speakers, that's to say, what theatres use subs which are not JBL's?
That's a good question. For commercial cinemas, 25 could very well be the extension limit, and I couldn't say whose subs are in there. Producing that kind of bass in that large of a space isn't a simple or cheap matter. My comment was regarding HT subs as reaching down to 20 is pretty normal. I noticed in another comment you mentioned giving the gain knob a bump and it didn't sound that great. Having never heard your sub, I will take a shot in the dark and guess it was tuned with a little bump in the curve, maybe around 50hz. That would tend to sound boomy and flabby with too much volume. I did own a jbl subwoofer(and have experience with other jbl subs) long ago and I loved it. Until I replaced it with an svs with much better driver control, extension, and linearity. That was very eye opening. I still own jbl speakers but won't own another sub from them. Or pretty much any "speaker" builder.
 
S

Silvador

Audiophyte
Hey guys, someone brought up the JBL 550p on Reddit when I was looking at subs. Would you say the JBL, or a BIC pl200 I found on offer up for $200? 10x10 room, open to a 30 sq ft walk in closet, used for music/gaming(Rap and hip hop). The sub would be paired with my Audioengine a5+. Budget 300+/- but being a college student, less is more
 
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KEW

KEW

Audioholic Overlord
Hey guys, someone brought up the JBL 550p on Reddit when I was looking at subs. Would you say the JBL, or a BIC pl200 I found on offer up for $200? 10x10 room, open to a 30 sq ft walk in closet, used for music/gaming(Rap and hip hop). The sub would be paired with my Audioengine a5+. Budget 300+/- but being a college student, less is more
First off, I have heard neither.

However, the comparison is of a reasonably well designed inexpensive 12" ported sub (BIC) vs a reasonably well designed low to mid-priced 10" sealed sub (JBL). So I believe there are some general points we can fairly take from that.

The driver of the JBL is an impressive looking component.

Choose JBL: For "mainstream" music, the JBL would be the choice, hands down.
Less easy choice: If you listen to music with a lot of synthesized deep bass (i.e.-lower than a bass guitar plays - low E on a bass guitar is 41Hz and if it is one of the new ones with a 5th lower B string, that is 30Hz), that makes it a more difficult choice. The ported sub will be more powerful in the low 20's and if you have a large room to fill, it may be a better option for you. You will be sacrificing some of the quality of the 30-80Hz range with the BIC.
Choose BIC: For watching movies with low frequency content. We don't recognize the sound signature of C4 vs Dynamite exploding and more lower frequency energy is good! The BIC will provide more low frequency energy!

If you have not had or listened to a good sub, You will love the JBL for movies - any decent sub adds a lot.
Given you are pairing with a5's I believe the JBL is really the better choice.
Also, I assume you are not using Audyssey or any other room EQ and I believe the 20Hz frequencies of a ported sub can get quickly out of control once room gain is added!

Good luck! (and I suspect you will greatly enjoy either!)
 
S

Silvador

Audiophyte
First off, I have heard neither.

However, the comparison is of a reasonably well designed inexpensive 12" ported sub (BIC) vs a reasonably well designed low to mid-priced 10" sealed sub (JBL). So I believe there are some general points we can fairly take from that.

The driver of the JBL is an impressive looking component.

Choose JBL: For "mainstream" music, the JBL would be the choice, hands down.
Less easy choice: If you listen to music with a lot of synthesized deep bass (i.e.-lower than a bass guitar plays - low E on a bass guitar is 41Hz and if it is one of the new ones with a 5th lower B string, that is 30Hz), that makes it a more difficult choice. The ported sub will be more powerful in the low 20's and if you have a large room to fill, it may be a better option for you. You will be sacrificing some of the quality of the 30-80Hz range with the BIC.
Choose BIC: For watching movies with low frequency content. We don't recognize the sound signature of C4 vs Dynamite exploding and more lower frequency energy is good! The BIC will provide more low frequency energy!

If you have not had or listened to a good sub, You will love the JBL for movies - any decent sub adds a lot.
Given you are pairing with a5's I believe the JBL is really the better choice.
Also, I assume you are not using Audyssey or any other room EQ and I believe the 20Hz frequencies of a ported sub can get quickly out of control once room gain is added!

Good luck! (and I suspect you will greatly enjoy either!)
Thank you so much for the detailed reply! Out of those two, definitely seems like the JBL is my choice. Someone on offer up just got back to me. The have the definitive technology prosub 1000 for $200. Yet another contender. Would you still say the jbl?
 
KEW

KEW

Audioholic Overlord
Thank you so much for the detailed reply! Out of those two, definitely seems like the JBL is my choice. Someone on offer up just got back to me. The have the definitive technology prosub 1000 for $200. Yet another contender. Would you still say the jbl?
I would stick with the JBL because for me, it is more of a known quantity. Also, knowing the DT is a 10" ported sub in a cabinet that is smaller than that for the 10" sealed JBL indicates that priority was given to making the DT a compact sub. (Ported subs need larger cabinets to work well) IME, that Indicates a performance compromise.
Someone may know better, but a compact version of a 10" ported sub does not sound like a good idea to me!

Last, by all accounts Def Tech speakers sound pretty good (not sure about subs). However they have a reputation for exaggerating their specifications. If you are considering one of their products, I just wanted to make sure you understood not to put trust in their numbers.
 
S

Silvador

Audiophyte
Hopefully the sale/stock lasts that long! I'm already a little surprised how long it's lasting.
You make a good point. I just asked a friend of mine to spot me. I got it :)

Question, how do I hook it up to my audioengine a5+
 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Seriously, I have no life.
You make a good point. I just asked a friend of mine to spot me. I got it :)

Question, how do I hook it up to my audioengine a5+
FWIW my previous comment was only based on the sub quality, not the connectivity. Now that I feel guilty, I'll start RTFMs :)
 
S

Silvador

Audiophyte
FWIW my previous comment was only based on the sub quality, not the connectivity. Now that I feel guilty, I'll start RTFMs :)
Is that Line level input, RCAs on the JBL? I think my A5+ have rca outputs. Not sure. Currently boxed up, waiting for me to move on the 25th for school again
 
KEW

KEW

Audioholic Overlord
You make a good point. I just asked a friend of mine to spot me. I got it :)
Congratulations! Deals this good don't come too often! You are lucky that your timing happened to be right!

Question, how do I hook it up to my audioengine a5+
Easy,
1) Turn sub "Level" down and Power off. Switch "Input Mode" to "normal".
2) Run a stereo RCA cable from the R&L RCA Output on your AE5+ to the RCA inputs on your sub! (alternately, you can use a RCA Y-splitter with the mono RCA cable JBL provides)
3) Adjust "Crossover" knob on sub to ~65Hz (you can fine tune by ear later, but this should get you close)
4) Play some music with good bass content (but not just bass - you are interested in balancing bass with mid-range)
5) Turn (plugged in!) sub on and increase volume gradually until you can tell sounds are clearly coming from the sub, then back off just a touch
6) That's it! You can play with the phase switch (I rarely notice a difference), Crossover, and Level to fine tune it, but these settings should get you very close.

PS: Who am I kidding...FIRST & NEW SUB! - For step 5, you will probably want to turn it up and get "bass happy" for a week or two just to enjoy a "glut" of new bass in your system! However, I am of the philosophy that a well tuned sub never calls attention to itself...it just makes it sound like your speakers have ridiculously deep bass. Otherwise, if the sub is run too loud the bass guitar will obscure the detail of lower notes from the guitar (for example). But ultimately, your preference is all that matters!

Enjoy...and let us know how it goes!
 
S

Silvador

Audiophyte
Congratulations! Deals this good don't come too often! You are lucky that your timing happened to be right!



Easy,
1) Turn sub "Level" down and Power off. Switch "Input Mode" to "normal".
2) Run a stereo RCA cable from the R&L RCA Output on your AE5+ to the RCA inputs on your sub! (alternately, you can use a RCA Y-splitter with the mono RCA cable JBL provides)
3) Adjust "Crossover" knob on sub to ~65Hz (you can fine tune by ear later, but this should get you close)
4) Play some music with good bass content (but not just bass - you are interested in balancing bass with mid-range)
5) Turn (plugged in!) sub on and increase volume gradually until you can tell sounds are clearly coming from the sub, then back off just a touch
6) That's it! You can play with the phase switch (I rarely notice a difference), Crossover, and Level to fine tune it, but these settings should get you very close.

PS: Who am I kidding...FIRST & NEW SUB! - For step 5, you will probably want to turn it up and get "bass happy" for a week or two just to enjoy a "glut" of new bass in your system! However, I am of the philosophy that a well tuned sub never calls attention to itself...it just makes it sound like your speakers have ridiculously deep bass. Otherwise, if the sub is run too loud the bass guitar will obscure the detail of lower notes from the guitar (for example). But ultimately, your preference is all that matters!

Enjoy...and let us know how it goes!
Thank You! I will definitely let you know how it sounds. I move into my place on the 25th.

So, when I turn my music up or down on my a5+, will the sub turn down too? Or must I now use my pc volume control?

(I do both usually. I normally use my volume wheel on my keyboard. But when I'm away from my desktop, I use the remote for the a5+).
 
KEW

KEW

Audioholic Overlord
So, when I turn my music up or down on my a5+, will the sub turn down too?
Yes, the output of the A5+ is a variable output, so the sub volume will change with the volume control of the A5+!
Happily, the A5+ is well suited for use with a sub!
 
R

rdkusher

Audioholic Intern
my sub should be here tomorrow.i would have had it tuesday but i had to refuse the shipment due to damage.hopefully the new one makes it here intact.this will be the first sub i have had in a few years.hopefully the sale will last a bit longer so i can get a second if i like this one.
 
S

Silvador

Audiophyte
Yes, the output of the A5+ is a variable output, so the sub volume will change with the volume control of the A5+!
Happily, the A5+ is well suited for use with a sub!
Sweet, thank you! I'll most likely enjoy it. I need a SQ sub for my car now. Was debating on how much to spend. Was thinking is 12 or Imax 12
 

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